From Blakey to Brown, Como to Costa, Eckstine to Eldridge, Galbraith to Garner, Harris to Hines, Horne to Hyman, Jamal to Jefferson, Kelly to Klook; Mancini to Marmarosa, May to Mitchell, Negri to Nestico, Parlanto Ponder, Reed to Ruther, Strayhorn to Sullivan, Turk to Turrentine, Wade to Williams… the forthcoming publication Treasury of Pittsburgh Jazz Connections by Dr. Nelson Harrison and Dr. Ralph Proctor, Jr. will document the legacy of one of the world’s greatest jazz capitals.
Do you want to know who Dizzy Gillespie idolized? Did you ever wonder who inspired Kenny Clarke and Art Blakey? Who was the pianist that mentored Monk, Bud Powell, Tad Dameron, Elmo Hope, Sarah Vaughan and Mel Torme? Who was Art Tatum’s idol and Nat Cole’s mentor? What musical quartet pioneered the concept adopted later by the Modern Jazz Quartet? Were you ever curious to know who taught saxophone to Stanley Turrentine or who taught piano to Ahmad Jamal? What community music school trained Robert McFerrin, Sr. for his history-making debut with the Metropolitan Opera? What virtually unknown pianist was a significant influence on young John Coltrane, Shirley Scott, McCoy Tyner, Bobby Timmons and Ray Bryant when he moved to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in the 1940s? Would you be surprised to know that Erroll Garner attended classes at the Julliard School of Music in New York and was at the top of his class in writing and arranging proficiency?
Some answers can be gleaned from the postings on the Pittsburgh Jazz Network.
For almost 100 years the Pittsburgh region has been a metacenter of jazz originality that is second to no other in the history of jazz. One of the best kept secrets in jazz folklore, the Pittsburgh Jazz Legacy has heretofore remained mythical. We have dubbed it “the greatest story never told” since it has not been represented in writing before now in such a way as to be accessible to anyone seeking to know more about it. When it was happening, little did we know how priceless the memories would become when the times were gone.
Today jazz is still king in Pittsburgh, with events, performances and activities happening all the time. The Pittsburgh Jazz Network is dedicated to celebrating and showcasing the places, artists and fans that carry on the legacy of Pittsburgh's jazz heritage.
Aw man I woulda came in for that! I am getting the tenor/soprano/flute thing together. I am thinking about getting an upright and just walk basslines in my free time so I need to practice the reeds everyday to coordinate them.
Playing at Tana with Tony again? He has a good sound there the time I saw him. He did not use a mike and the alto's higher pitch cuts through. Food was good also, had a good listen. Never forget your audience!- kev
Thanx Dan! Just waitin' for my resources to come through and tweaking things around the house. The I can get out your way and see my granddaughter , help out then hang out.I am practicing good and enjoying it as always.
I enjoy jamming with you. I was glad and surprise to see your page. It's a must known that I get my picture taken with my axe so I can look good like you (smile). Looking forward to seeing you this weedend, Garl
Remember that Coryell- Khan concert you went to? Here I am trying to play bass on Spain from that tour in '77. That record got a lot of airplay on WDUQ. At the time I knew who Larry was and never heard him but Steve played in the Brecker Bros. Band with David Sanborn. So I knew his playing!-kev Spain Coryell-Khan
Man it was great playin with you and the main man Harold Betters! That is why I keep practicing, gotta get back to Pgh. My son needs me and I love it that is where I came of age! So I hope Harold liked my playing- he was strong! I gotta get your address so next time I get to Wilkinsburg I can drop by . That is where my folks are at! What was the name of that place , it was pretty nice?- kev
What's up brother! See you finally got on your home network! I need to get your number so's I can come visit. I am driving in to see my son thanksgiving hopefully, my cell is 717-580-8532. Give me a call- kevin hurst
Ahh! The value of dating a picture. ;-) If you look at the enlarged pic, you'll see the date right on the left hand border (7.17.00). that was at the Monday jam session with Howie, James III and Kenny Blake.
Hi Dan Nice to SEE you again. Yens rocked the other night. Did you find Bud’s ok? If you got a second I’ll give you the reason behind “Mikies Storm“. However the time thing is a joke, I can be long winded and tend to over express myself in writing when it comes to my drawings. So read below when you got time… “Mikies storm” is of a friend, to be more exact Mikie is a mother of my first girl friend. That one girl friend you never kissed but loved just the same. Tiffany (girl friend) was a wild child and her mother hated me to the end. I was just another thing odd and “anti-” in Mikies daughter life. Well Tiff and I parted ways for years; I’d see her as she was coasting for state to state living the pure hippie life. She’d always have a bunch of dogs and a dirty face. She’d say hi, hug and disappear again, that was my Tiff. Well I hadn’t heard from her in years, then out of nowhere Tiff calls me, she’s on the run. I’m still not clear on what she did, but its bad enough that the FBI is on her tail. One day Tiff asked me to transport a letter (convict style) to her mom -Mikie. I agreed, and stepped into a big mess. Mikies caught me delivering the letter, but was so happy to see that boy she hated to death so many years ago; it seems to be a recurring theme in my life. After Mikie finding out I still was in contact with Tiff we began a phone tag game for about 3 years. Mikie would call me asking about Tiff. After a few months she got relaxed and unloading these horrifying tales of kidnapping incest and suicide that plagued her family. At one point we talked for 3 hours, about how she was going to die. That’s were the painting came in. I wanted to be a good listener but I didn’t want to get to deep, so I began to doodle on a canvas. Mikie would describ her life as she battled to keep from going insane. One day it was done, both the paintings and the phone calls. All of Mikies pain, anger, and love just vanished, and a painting took its place. I wonder how she is doing now. Deep! You bet Dan.